GDC2006 Post IV: Sweeping Vista Under the Rug

Microsoft was doing their best to get the message out that Vista, the next version of Windows, with its Vista Game Explorer, Xbox 360 Controller for Windows, and new in-box games is going to be the game platform for the future despite the fact that the company announced a delay in its release the same week as the Game Developers Conference. But yes, this guy was playing Solitare.

GDC2006 Post III: I Didn’t Do It

Tucked into the far back corner of the Expo Hall, behind all of the other recruiters, was a small booth with several of these posters. I have to say I nearly fell backward in amazement; just look at the second word in the line above “WANTED”. Is that bizarre, or what?

As a matter of fact, as I walked up, one of the guys at the booth was just telling the other staffers that they’d had several of these posters stolen from around the corner of the booth, and he was taking one down before it, too, vanished.

That address at the bottom is, by the way. They use Director to prototype front ends for the gaming industry. And they weren’t the only company there looking for Director programmers.

GDC2006 Post I: We Have a Winner!

Jake Grandchamp of RabidLab, who wrote the wacky Dodge That Anvil is pictured here with his custom-made anvil in front of the kiosk where his game was displayed at the Game Developers Conference in San Jose this week. The game was nominated in two categories (Best Web Game, Innovation In Audio) for the 2006 Independent Games Festival. It didn’t win either one but Jake did get the Special 2006 IGF Award sponsored by, which came with a $5,000 prize. Read Jake’s interview.

GWOT Timeline Update

In his press conference today, President Bush said that a US military presence in Iraq will be “decided by future presidents and future governments of Iraq.” Assuming he’s planning to serve out his full term, that means that the war will last at least until 20 January 2009, the 2,134th day after the invasion of Iraq.

With that in mind, I’ve updated the Global War on Terror timeline comparison.

The good news is that the projected length of the Iraq War is still less than the length of the Vietnam War. The bad news is that the amount of time we’ve been in Iraq hasn’t quite reached the amount of time that elapsed between the Gulf of Tonkin incident and the Tet Offensive.


I’m flying into San Jose tomorrow (Wednesday, 22 March) for the Game Developers Conference. If you’re signed up for the Minna Mingle tomorrow night at the Corinthian Center (and really, who isn’t?) I’ll see you there!

MAX in Vegas: Shockwave & Awe

It hasn’t been posted on Macromedia’s site yet, but the word is out in the user group community that the next MAX conference is slated for Las Vegas, October 22-26.

Now, I go to MAX because without free t-shirts I have nothing to wear for the rest of the year, but there is, admittedly, not a lot of content at MAX for Director developers. After last year’s show I found myself wondering if perhaps it might not be worthwhile to try to schedule a day-long Director only presentation either one day before or after the main portion of MAX. Director users who were already going to MAX for other reasons would have more content they could use. People who were on the verge of attending might have a reason to take the plunge. People who could get a cheap flight to Vegas could attend just the Director stuff.

The hotel I stayed at for last year’s MAX was just around the corner from the Anaheim Conference Center where MAX was held, had meeting rooms that could hold a couple hundred people (which weren’t being used) and would have been a fine, low-key, relatively low-cost venue for such an event. Whatever happens, I don’t want to get caught in the trap Pat McClellan and Zac Belado did with the planned 2000 Director conference in Florida when Macromedia pulled out at the last hour.

Tentatively, I’m calling this “Shockwave & Awe”. I know there’s got to be a better name.

I’d love to hear what people think of the idea (and suggestions for a better name). If you think that you might be interested, send me your name at dplant at If you have an idea of how much you think something like this might be worth to you, let me know. If you’d be interested in presenting something, let me know — I can promise you I won’t pay any less than Macromedia’s paid for its speakers in the past (i.e. nothing). If you (Zac) think this is the most screwed-up idea you’ve ever heard of let me know. No promises, but hey, what have I got to lose but a wad of money?

Portland Protest Photo

Just a little photo from the Portland peace march, on 19 March 2006. Looking toward the Morrison Bridge from the west side of Waterfront Park.

I haven’t heard what the crowd estimate was, and I really have no idea. The park area seemed pretty full between the bridge and Oak Street a couple blocks away, where the march began.

Reinhard vs. Allawi

Letter to the Oregonian:

In his Sunday editorial, David Reinhard chides those of us who predicted a civil war in Iraq by asking “where’s a true civil war?” Pretty snappy come-back.

Of course, on the same day, the BBC reported that Iyad Allawi, the former interim prime minister of Iraq and someone presumably more in tune with the situation there than Mr. Reinhard, said this:

“It is unfortunate that we are in civil war. We are losing each day as an average 50 to 60 people throughout the country, if not more.

“If this is not civil war, then God knows what civil war is.”